Welcome to the New Site

Welcome to the New Site

New Music Teacher Teaching Tips and Activities



New Elementary music teacher teaching tips and activities with a free resource that gives you materials and tools for success.

If you are a new elementary music teacher, you may be feeling a bit overwhelmed and underprepared.

First, take a deep breath!

There are many free resources, blog posts, videos and podcasts as well as tutorials out there to help you navigate the first year of teaching.

And if you’re an experienced teacher, you’ll find some fresh ideas for making the most of your music teaching career.


In this post I’ll share over 25 activities you can get for FREE in the NEW MUSIC TEACHER FREEBIE 

There’s also a special freebie with this bundle of activities as well as a google slides presentation for you to use.

These activities are part of the Free Resource Library on the website but I’ve put them together in a bundle so you can access them all at once.


In the New Music Teacher Freebie I’ve included some planning templates and organizers as well as over 20 music education resources.  There are some for planning, creating classroom culture and music activities.

I’m focusing on 3 things that you’ll want to consider when you begin teaching- and believe it or not, décor isn’t one of them.

I honestly believe that the way you present yourself and the way you interact with your students far outweighs your room décor.

The three things I think are important are:




If you’re new, then I think these 3 things are a good place to start.

Later you can deal with your décor and classroom organization, creating programs and getting more instruments and materials.


Planning can be a daunting task.

When I first started teaching, I traveled to six schools.

I found that teaching at 6 different schools one year that I had to plan.  I had to have a calendar.

I had to schedule things.

And the good thing about that is that putting things on paper is like making a goal.

I found that using a planner and outlining my scope and sequence really helped me envision the end goals I had for my students.

I wanted to create a curriculum that covered as much as possible between grades K-6.

I wanted my students to have a variety of musical experiences like choir singing, playing barred instruments, playing ukulele, playing guitar, playing recorders, performing for an audience, getting to know the great composers, and experiencing multi-cultural music.

And so I worked on that for 20 years.  

These are the planning resources.

Google Slide Planner- Lesson Planner Template

This planner can be used in google slides or there’s a printable one you can use in a notebook.

 Meet the Teacher Google Slides

I created this and posted on my teacher website.

Create a Music Lesson Unit

This freebie will help you create a music lesson unit using one song.  As a new teacher you want to consider streamlining your lessons and using some of the materials in more than one grade.

Creative Movement Planner

5-Google Slides Lesson Planner

The google slides presentation has videos already embedded in it you can use in your classroom to get you started.  

I’ve organized the slides by grade with activities in the presentation you can use at the beginning of the school year and beyond.

There are several name games, hello songs, body percussion activities, scarf activity and a freeze dance as well as a music lesson that you can use for a sub plan. 


I’m using the word classroom culture to include procedures, management and team building as well as social emotional learning.

I’ve shared many of ideas in these two videos and they have activities in them as well as teaching tips.

First Day Elementary Music Activities

First Day Upper Elementary Music Activities

For me, the most important thing to do at the beginning of the school year and even during the first year is to learn about how to interact with students.

How we communicate with and how we treat the students matters.

Obviously, I was raised in a different generation than today’s kids.

I’ve had to adjust the way I work with my students.

I recommend giving some thought as to the kind of relationships you want to have with your students and your optimal classroom culture.


How will you teach the rules?  

How will you teach the procedures?

What’s your teaching style?

Will the students have assigned seats?

Do the students raise their hands to talk?

How do you teach them a song?

Will you use a circle activity or put them in rows?

How will you teach your rules?

What are your consequences?

How will you communicate with parents?

Right now, I’m feeling overwhelmed just talking about all this stuff!!!

Even if you don’t have all the answers, if you’re thinking about it-they’ll come to you, and you’ll figure it out.

One thing I recommend is having a set way to greet your students that you repeat throughout the year.

 That means if you are not feeling great or you’re not there- can that greeting activity be done by the SUB or the students?

If you repeat all the time, then your students won’t need you to sing with them. 


I sing a hello song with every class.  I talk about that in this video “FIRST DAY MUSIC ACTIVITIES K-2”

In the Free music teacher starter kit I’ve included a hello song for you to use and a goodbye song.

Hello Song and Name Game 

Goodbye Song “Goodbye My Friends, Goodbye”

Upper Elementary Bts Game “Toss And Pass” To Learn Names and build classroom community.

Positive praise goes a long way to creating a positive classroom culture.

Exit Reward Tickets

I use reward tickets for classes at the beginning of the year to communicate to the students that behavior does matter and I want them to act nice and do their best.

I also teach my procedures and rules using songs.

This is a simple song I use for my K-1 classes.

“Keep Your Hands Feet Words to Yourself”

And I use this song to teach my students to sit down and be quiet.

 “Criss cross applesauce”

The last thing is having a core set of music activities for all classes.


I came up with some basic music activities that will get you started.

I included first day activities for both primary and upper grades.

Orff Arrangement and two part song “ I Make Music”

You can use this song with all your grades.

Your K-1 students can do it as a chant and clap the rhythm of the words and march on the beat.

The 2-3 students can sing the song.

The 4-6th grades can sing in 2 parts and play the instrument parts.

If your instruments are out in the room, you can play this game.

I Spy Instruments Game

I personally use a body percussion activity for the first month of school.

This freebie will get you started with some basic activities.

Body Percussion Activity

I’ve also included things that you can use all year long like

Move to the Beat Activity

Beat Strips and Rhythm Charts

Steady Beat Activities

Music Curriculum Preview with 20 Beat Charts

Music Worksheets

Finally, I’ve put activities in a google slides presentation for you to use on the very first day.


The google slides presentation has videos from the Sing Play Create Kids Music Channel and some of the activities already in it for you to use. 

“Johnny Plays the Drumbeat” Name Game as well as hello Songs and Name Games for primary grades. 

You can play these games during the first month of school to get to know your students.

The More We Get Together is a fun body percussion activity that can also be a name game.

Name Games for the First Day of School Link


If you’re into scarf activities, or want to get started, then the BTS scarf activity is a fun one for the primary grades.  They can follow along and wave their scarves and you’ll be teaching them about personal space, connecting movement with music and having fun at the same time.



If you have students who need more movement opportunities, then the BTS freeze dance will work for them.

Back to School FREEZE DANCE & Dynamics Lesson, Brain Break, Movement Activity Link


You can begin your classes with this body percussion hello song.  It works for K-3rd grades.


Doggie, Doggie Where’s Your Bone?  Is a traditional game song and music activity that’s fun to sing and play.

You’ll be able to use this lesson right away with your 2nd and 3rd graders. 

Finally, this video planner can be your SUB TUB or available to use on those times when you’ve come to work sick and can’t talk.  

This way you’ll have activities ready for any situation that might pop up.


Elementary music teachers looking for a resource to establish their music classroom and lessons across grade levels will LOVE this music teacher starter bundle. These materials will help you establish your classroom management, procedures, and provide you with the basic lesson materials you need for all grade levels. 

You’ll find activities to support these concepts and teacher needs: Pitch, Rhythm, Timbre, Dynamics, Melody, Management, Procedures, BTS Songs, Games, Chants. It’s time for you to get organized and have everything you need for successful teaching!


Elementary Music Teacher Basic Resource Bundle: Lessons, Decor, Planning

Kindergarten Elementary Music Core Lesson BUNDLE: Songs, Games, Activities

Elementary Music Curriculum and Music Teaching Essentials

Elementary Music Curriculum, Music Lessons and Music Teacher Essentials Bundle

K-6 Elementary Music Curriculum Lessons & Activities: Year Long BUNDLE

K-6 Elementary Music Curriculum Lessons & Activities: Year Long BUNDLE

The MUSIC CLASS ESSENTIALS BUNDLE provides the basic songs, chants, activities, games, classroom management and decor for the Elementary Music Teacher. The original songs, games, chants, planner and décor provide the essentials that every music teacher needs to create a foundation for a successful music classroom. Whether you need to establish or embellish your music classroom, you’ll find that the music class essentials basic is the answer to your next school year success.

Elementary Music Class Resources BUNDLE: Songs, Activities, Games, Chants, Lessons, Planner, Decor

Elementary Music Class Resources World BUNDLE: Activities, Songs, Planner, Decor

Elementary Music Class Resources World BUNDLE: Activities, Songs, Planner, Decor

It may seem overwhelming, but I’m here to help.  I want you to be successful and that’s why I created this FREE music education RESOURCE to get you started.

Whether you are a new or returning music teacher, I believe these teaching tips and activities will give you the materials and tools you need to be successful.


Need more music activities?

10 Back to School Elementary Music Activities 

10 Back to School Elementary Music Activities Blog Post

Thanks for reading this post!

Sandra from Sing Play Create

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Meet Sandra

Hi there!  I’m Sandra, one of the authors behind Sing Play Create.  My goal is to provide teachers with interactive resources and activities to improve the effectiveness of their teaching and enhance student learning.

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